by Laura Beatty

Mia Morgan researches a book about Brilliana Harley, a lone Puritan in a county of Royalists during the English Civil War. She becomes absorbed in the past, reading letters & historical documents. Written as a narrative, with no speech punctuation - text, thoughts and speech all flow together. The vivid description of landscape, birds and flowers, envelope the reader in the atmosphere of the Welsh borders. An absorbing read.


It's just a bit of research, Da. I've been looking at the Marcher castles, or some of them - for a book, you know. Aha. A book? A biography of a woman who lived round here, in the Civil War, a Puritan, who held her castle against the Cavaliers. Aha. Ines didn't tell me you were writing a book. It is the first time he has sounded pleased, really pleased, for a long while. He leans forward, his chin up to listen ... she doesn't think much to me, the woman in question. She's called Brilliana Harley. She lived in Brampton Bryan, the other side of Shrewsbury, near Wigmore, married to an older man called Robert. She disapproves of me. Don't be ridiculous, Mia's father says.


Lady of Hay by Barbara Erskine

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